Steve Perryman

Steve Perryman
Personal information
Full name Stephen John Perryman
Date of birth (1951-12-21) 21 December 1951
Place of birth Ealing, Middlesex, England
Height 1.76 m (5 ft 9 12 in)[1]
Playing position Defender, Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Milton Keynes Dons (Associate Director)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1969–1986 Tottenham Hotspur 655 (31)
1986–1987 Oxford United 17 (0)
1987–1990 Brentford 53 (0)
Total 725 (31)
National team
1972–1975 England U23 17 (0)
1982 England 1 (0)
Teams managed
1987–1990 Brentford (player manager)
1990–1993 Watford
1994 Tottenham Hotspur (caretaker)
1995 Start
1999–2000 Shimizu S-Pulse
2001–2002 Kashiwa Reysol
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Stephen John Perryman MBE (born 21 December 1951 in Ealing, Middlesex) is an English former professional football player who is most famous for his successes with Tottenham Hotspur during the 1970s and early 1980s. Perryman was voted Football Writers' Association Footballer of the Year in 1982 and made a club record 854 first team appearances for Tottenham.[1] He was the director of football at Exeter City from 2003[2][3] until his temporary retirement in March 2018[4]. He is currently an associate director at MK Dons, having come out of retirement to join former Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale at the club.[5]

Playing career

A midfielder and later defender, Perryman played in a club record 866 first team appearances, in all competitions for Tottenham Hotspur between 1969 and 1986 and was their longest serving player. During his seventeen-year career with the north London club, Perryman collected many medals, winning the UEFA Cup in 1972 and 1984 (playing in both legs of the 1972 final and just the first leg of the 1984 final), the FA Cup in 1981 and 1982, and the League Cup in 1971 and 1973. Perryman was voted the Football Writers' Association Footballer of the Year in 1982.

Perryman did not score often even by the standards of contemporaries who played his position, however he scored both goals in a 2-1 home win over A.C. Milan in the 1972 UEFA Cup semi-final first leg. Spurs went on to win the round 3-2 on aggregate, and then won the title, defeating Wolverhampton Wanderers in the final.

After leaving White Hart Lane Perryman moved to Oxford United in 1986, then Brentford as player-manager in the same year, before retiring in 1990.[1]

Coaching career

Perryman became manager of Watford from 1990–93 saving them from relegation in the early years, before managing Start in Norway (1995),[6] Shimizu S-Pulse, (1999–2000) and Kashiwa Reysol in Japan (2001–2002). He also served as caretaker manager for Spurs in November 1994. As a coach, he has won the J.League stage championship (1999 2nd Stage) and the Asian Cup Winners Cup (2000), both with Shimizu S-Pulse. He then worked at Exeter City with no official title to help them stay in the then football Division 3. After this he returned to Japan to manage J.League side Kashiwa Reysol.

Perryman lent his name to a brand of Sports stores in the 1980s which were concentrated in the West London area and sported the Tottenham Hotspur cockerel. There were stores in Ruislip, Greenford and Hayes (Middlesex). A store in Bergen, Norway, also opened in the early 1980s, which is still operating.[7]

Since 2003, Perryman has been director of football for Exeter City.[2] On 5 May 2012, while watching Exeter's final game of the 2011–12 season against Sheffield United at St James Park he became unwell and was taken to Derriford Hospital in Plymouth where he underwent successful heart surgery.[8] A month later he revealed that he might have died if it had not been for the instant medical support available at the ground, and he spent three weeks in a coma on life support. He said he wanted to resume his job with Exeter City as soon as he was fit enough.[9]

In January 2018, Perryman announced that he would retire as Exeter City's Director of Football at the end of the 2017-18 season[10]. However, in August of that year, Perryman joined former Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale at MK Dons, becoming an associate director of the club.[11]

International career

After 17 matches for England U23,[12] Perryman made a solitary appearance for England, appearing as a 70th-minute substitute against Iceland on 2 June 1982.

Personal life

Perryman is married and has four children. He is close friends with Ossie Ardiles.[13] He lives in Lympstone.[14] Perryman is a Labour Party supporter.[15]

Career statistics


Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental[nb 1] Other[nb 2] Total
SeasonClubLeague AppsGoals AppsGoals AppsGoals AppsGoals AppsGoals AppsGoals
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Other Total
1969–70Tottenham HotspurFirst Division2314000271
1977–78Second Division4212020461
1978–79First Division4217120512
1985–86Oxford UnitedFirst Division9000000090
1986–87BrentfordThird Division240300000270
Total Tottenham Hotspur 6553169266364312086639
Oxford United 170000000170
Brentford 530603050670
Career total 7253175269364317095039

Managerial statistics


Team From To Record
Shimizu S-Pulse 1999 2000 60 37 3 20 061.67
Kashiwa Reysol 2001 2002 28 10 3 15 035.71
Total 88 47 6 35 053.41



Tottenham Hotspur


Shimizu S-Pulse




  1. 1 2 3 "Steve Perryman – fact file". Retrieved 2 January 2009.
  2. 1 2 "Steve Perryman: Exeter City director of football asks fans for 'positive noise'". BBC Sport. 16 May 2017.
  3. "Who's Who". Exeter City. Retrieved 20 March 2013.
  4. "Tottenham legend Steve Perryman retires from football after watching his Exeter side lose in League Two play-off final". Devon Live. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  5. "Tottenham legend Steve Perryman joins MK Dons - three months after retiring from football after leaving Exeter City". Devon Live. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  6. ""Historisk oversikt: Trenere"". Archived from the original on 4 October 2012. Retrieved 20 March 2013. (in Norwegian). IK Start. Retrieved 20 March 2013.
  7. "Steve Perryman Sport". Steve Perryman Sport. Retrieved 2 January 2009.
  8. "Steve Perryman undergoes emergency heart surgery". BBC News. 6 May 2012. Retrieved 24 July 2012.
  9. "I'll be back as soon as I'm fit, says Perryman". This is Exeter. 14 June 2012. Archived from the original on 5 May 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2012.
  10. "Steve Perryman: Exeter City director of football to retire at end of season". BBC Sport. 3 January 2018.
  11. "Tottenham legend Steve Perryman joins MK Dons - three months after retiring from football after leaving Exeter City". DevonLive. 10 August 2018. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  12. "England – U-23 International Results – Details". Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  16. "Perryman career stats". Archived from the original on 12 May 2012. Retrieved 16 October 2008.. Steve Retrieved 20 March 2013.
  17. J.League Data Site(in Japanese)
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